LibriVox recording of Three Girls in a Flat, by Enid Yandell, Jean Loughborough and Laura Hayes. Read by Lee Ann Howlett.
Enid Yandell (October 6, 1870 - June 13, 1934) was an American sculptor who studied with Auguste Rodin and Frederick William MacMonnies. She created numerous portraits, garden pieces and small works as well as public monuments. Ms. Yandell also studied in Paris and kept a studio there. This book, Three Girls in a Flat, is a semi-autobiographical account of her work as a sculptor for the Horticultural Building at the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. Co-written with two friends, it's an episodic account of the trials and tribulations of three young women eking out a living while sharing a small flat in Chicago. The young ladies are called Virginia (or Gene), Marjorie and the Duke (a young sculptor -- certainly Ms. Yandell's character). Interspersed among the stories of their work days, social gatherings held in their flat, daily life in Chicago, interactions with their neighbors, and young male callers at various times, are descriptions of the work of the women involved with the Woman's Building at the Columbian Exposition. Part historical information and part personal events in the girl's lives, this is a light and enjoyable read. Or as the ladies state in their preface: "We beg to assure our readers that we do not consider this little book in any way a literary effort. It is a simple story which really wrote itself, and it is with great modesty and hesitation that we cast it upon the sea of public opinion." (Summary by Wikipedia and Lee Ann Howlett)
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February 13, 2012 Subject:
Excellent reading by Lee Ann Howlett.
I could have done with a bit less of the historical info - the listing of women participating on the Women's Committee and the inventory of articles in Mrs. Palmer's house were a bit tedious. When the story focused on the girls' experiences, it was light and entertaining. Overall, I would recommend this as an enjoyable story to listen to.